There’s a familiarity about New York City straight away. Most of us would have seen it in films and media, but being in this iconic city makes you realise just how much there is to discover.

As soon as you step outside the airport, the air changes. Your senses are heightened, your eyes widen and suddenly there’s a lot to take in. There’s an instant sense of excitement and rush. You feel the impact this city is about to have, and you can only suspect that it will live up to your every expectation.

One belongs to New York instantly, one belongs to it as much in five minutes as in five years.

Thomas Wolfe

On arrival, we checked in to the AirBnB apartment in Brooklyn and arranged to meet some local friends. Their insider knowledge gave us a starting point – the local bar, followed by dinner, then wine, then martinis across all different parts of town. I’d been in the city just a few hours but I quickly found myself wondering if I could live in this city. It’s buzz and energy is addictive, there a sense of opportunity is in the air, and you feel like something extraordinary is going to happen at any moment.

It’s a feeling that manifests itself many of it’s well-known attractions. Central Park is nested in the middle of NYC chaotic concrete jungle and offers an oasis amid the bustling city. Pack a family picnic, sit on the lush green lawns looking out to peaceful lakes, colourful flowerbeds and green woodland. There’s even a zoo, water activities and outdoor theatre performances.

It also boasts the most world-renowned museums and galleries than any city I’ve visited, covering subjects as diverse as math, music, trains and sex. Top of the list from my experience is MoMA, the Museum of Modern Art, which has a huge collection of the most famous artworks in the world, along with the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

New York is divided into five boroughs, with each borough delivering something unique. Staten Island has everything you need for a summer holiday, Manhattan becomes a magical wonderland in the winter, and Brooklyn is a melting pot of the city’s diversity and culture.

In Brooklyn, where I chose to stay, we looked over the water at Manhattan, listening to the literal roar of the city above it’s towering skyscrapers. A constant buzz in the distance, an amalgamation of sounds caused by its busy traffic, it’s dense population and their daily activities.

In New York, one corner houses a hip new gallery and on another, a quirky local brewery. Almost every street bears a building covered in street art, shop windows covered in a collage of local advertising. Street signs and traffic light posts bear some sort of sticker or mark left by the locals. None of the buildings looks like they’ve ever been refurbished, and yet it all feels new. Everything has been recently touched, changed, moved, been personalised, owned and marked. It’s the kind of thing the locals don’t notice, but make the city so special: it’s constantly reinventing itself. It’s always growing, changing, living and breathing.

New York is the meeting place of the peoples, the only city where you can hardly find a typical American.

Djuna Barnes

Most suggest that October is the best time to visit as you can watch as the colours slowly fade from green to yellow in cool weather as you stroll through the city with a hot cup of coffee. But with four distinctive changing seasons, each period will hold something unique.

There are endless reasons to visit New York. Every-time you return there will be something new, changed and unseen. But be warned: once you’ve visited, you won’t stop talking about it. It’s so easy to be immersed in it, while always having the sense that you haven’t really seen it all and there’s more to it than meets the eye.

It has an energy that really needs to be experienced to be understood, it’s ambitious, demanding, exciting and fascinating. It’s unlike any other city I know.

I can’t with any conscience argue for New York with anyone. It’s like Calcutta. But I love the city in an emotional, irrational way, like loving your mother or your father even though they’re a drunk or a thief. I’ve loved the city my whole life — to me, it’s like a great woman.

Woody Allen